Game Apps Designed By Women

by Kiersten Hickman
Young pacific islander athletic woman wearing headphones using smart phone.
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Not only are games created by women consistently badass, but it's also empowering to be able to see the craftsmanship of a woman who has worked hard in a world that is obviously male-dominated — which is especially true for the world of game design — come to life. So I think we should take some time to recognize a few game apps designed by women.

While surfing the web for women game designers, specifically for mobile apps, I was saddened by how male-saturated the mobile gaming world truly is — even though women do love playing games. The industry is, sadly, male-dominated, and that's not going to change unless we keep pointing it out.

However, there are a few women working in the gaming industry who are trailblazing a way for a more diverse, inclusive, woman-dominated future. Aka, badasses. I gotta be honest, when finding women who have developed some creative games, either by themselves or with a team, I was dancing right at my computer. They're all so inspirational! So let’s take a moment to recognize some of the incredible games that these women have created, and hopefully encourage young women to enter the world of game design.

Shattered Planet: Tanya Short

Not only is Tanya Short the genius behind Shattered Planet, but she also took time to talk about her design process and passion behind this project in an article on KitFox Games after the release!

Freedom Fall: Lisa Rye

Behind the mystical game Freedom Fall, Lisa Rye worked as the creative director and designer for this game app. Freedom Fall also won awards including Best Game Design for the Australia-wide Game Developer Awards!

Eyes The Horror Game: Paulina Pabis

Are you a fan of horror? Well so is Paulina Pabis, the woman behind the game app Eyes. The objective of the game is to find something within a haunted place without trying to see a ghost. If you see a ghost, you go mad!

Lume: Katherine Bidwell

Bidwell is the co-creator for Lume, a game full of mystery and suspicion. The design of this game actually includes handmade paper dioramas that were actually filmed! Talk about a clever game design tactic.

Tengami: Jennifer Schneidereit

If you are ga-ga over Japanese art and pop up books, this game design is your cup of tea! Schneidereit created a beautiful world that requires the user to solve puzzles, and the interaction is like working with a pop-up book itself.

Matatu: Terry Karungi

Although this 22-year-old game designer has said she did not work alone, she was the only woman on her team and the face behind Matatu. Not only that, but she entered her app into a Google Application competition and won against three male competitors! Oh, and it’s one of the most popular games to play in Uganda. So cool.

Hinadan: Masako Wakamiya

Wakamiya is the epitome of the phrase “it is never too late to achieve your dreams.” She not only developed the game app Hinadan, but she did at the whopping age of 81. Badass.

Kingdom of Camelot: Holly Liu

Not only is Liu a cofounder of Google Ventures-backed Kabam (a game developing company), but she is also the developer behind the brilliant game Kingdom of Camelot. Her hands have touched numerous other popular mobile games including Transformers and Lord of the Rings.

Shufflepix: Shinji Kim

A young, 26-year-old New Yorker took it upon herself to develop Shufflepix: a social puzzle game. She even quit her job as a consultant to do it, and is now claiming fame for her clever design!

FarmVille: Amanda Wixted

Like most video games, Zynga claims development of this iconic game — but obviously there were tons of hands within the creation process, Amanda Wixted being one of them. She also assisted on developing other apps including Live Poker, Mafia Wars, and much more.